Tata Steel Becomes First Indian Company To Use LNG Powered Capesize Bulk Carrier

Tata Steel has adopted various “industry first” initiatives in sustainability. Reiterating its commitment to a sustainable future, Tata Steel becomes the first Indian company to import cargo on bulk carrier that uses LNG as fuel instead of traditional VLSFO (Very Low Sulphur Fuel Oil). This groundbreaking vessel sets a new benchmark for sustainable shipping practices in India and marks a significant milestone in the country’s maritime sector.

On July 24, 2023, cape vessel “MV Ubuntu Unity” successfully berthed at Dharma port to discharge 1,65,700 metric tons of coal. The vessel was received at port by Ranjan Sinha, Chief Group Shipping, Tata Steel, along with other senior executives of Tata Steel and Dhamra Port. Going forward, Tata Steel plans to import ~1 million tons of coking coal in FY24 from Australia in such LNG-powered vessels.

Tata Steel
Credit: Tata Steel

Dhamra Port also extended special privileges to the LNG vessel, thereby contributing to Tata Steel’s quest to lower Scope 3 emissions.

MV Ubuntu Unity loaded coal from Gladstone port and sailed off on July 1, 2023. She used LNG during its ballast leg (Tianjin to Gladstone) and a mix of LNG and traditional fuel during its laden leg (Gladstone to Dhamra). Carbon emission for this voyage was ~1800 tons lesser, which is ~35% less as compared to traditional Baltic specification cape vessels.

LNG is a cleaner fuel as compared to heavy fuel oil used in bulk ships, and with the increasing availability of LNG, this fuel is considered as transition fuel on the path of zero carbon emissions. Equipped with state-of-the-art technology, the vessel significantly reduces carbon emissions thereby aligning with global efforts to reduce climate change.

Peeyush Gupta, Vice President, Group Strategic Procurement and Supply Chain Tata Steel, said: “In 2021, Tata Steel became the first in the Indian Steel Industry to deploy a ship powered by biofuel. We continued the decarbonation drive with 7 biofuel shipments in FY23. In continuation to our sustainability drive, in FY24, we are the first to deploy an LNG-powered vessel for transportation of raw materials to India. This is a landmark initiative to lower the Company’s Scope 3 carbon footprint.

With innovation and participation of all the partners, in FY24, we endeavor to perform 10% of our total number of shipments for imports through alternate fuel-powered vessels.” Earlier in December 2021, Tata Steel had deployed the first Bio-Fuel powered vessel MV Frontier Sky which was also the first by any Indian steel manufacturer.

Tata Steel is also the first steel producer in the world to join the Sea Cargo Charter (SCC) to align its chartering activities with responsible environmental behavior consistent with the policies and ambitions of the International Maritime Organisation.

Press Release

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